New York, NY: May 17, 2018—In the year since Jewish National Fund (JNF-USA) launched its first-ever podcast series, “IsraelCast,” to share firsthand accounts of fascinating work performed by interesting people throughout Israel, 31 episodes have resulted in a total of 25,000 downloads, with individuals listening in from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Columbia, Brazil, Iceland, Spain, France, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, UK, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Kenya, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Nepal, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Israel, Turkey, and Cyprus.

Each episode of the bimonthly podcast features conversations and in-depth interviews with writers, CEOs, startup founders, culinary masterminds, activists, modern pioneers, and everyday Israelis shaping the various landscapes that make up the unique tapestry that is Israel. Popular episodes included interviews with Joseph Hyams, CEO of Honest Reporting; Alon Ben Gurion, grandson of Israel’s first Prime Minister, David Ben Gurion; Lior Lev Sercaz, chef, spice blender and owner of New York’s La Boite (where all of the top chefs get their spices); Tremayne B. Smith, a graduate of Georgetown University and political activist; and Kenneth Chepkwony, a Kenyan student who attended the Arava International Center for Agricultural Training.

“What makes this podcast so amazing is there is really nothing like it anywhere. And, as there's so much going on in Israel, this type of format is popular with folks around the world as the numbers and listeners prove,” says “IsraelCast” host Steven Shalowitz. “Going into our second year, we will continue to focus on our core objective—to share all the dynamic work and the inspiring people making it all happen with the wider world.”

Other popular episodes during the first year of IsraelCast include:

Major General Res. Doron Almog, a decorated veteran who received the Israel Prize in 2016, and founded Aleh Negev, a state-of-the-art rehabilitative village in the Negev, home for children and adults with severe special needs. While in the IDF, Major General Almog led an operational task force against the terrorists who murdered the Israeli sports team during the Munich Olympics. He also commanded the first force to land in Entebbe during the 1976 rescue operation and played a key role in the clandestine mission that rescued around 6,000 Jewish Ethiopians from refugee camps in the Sudan. He shares about the groundbreaking work of Aleh Negev and about his remarkable career. This episode is in coordination with Jewish Disabilities Awareness and Inclusion Month, which we honor every February.

Former Miss Israel, Titi Aynaw, recorded live at our 2017 National Conference in South Florida. A top Israeli model, television personality, Israel advocate and community leader, she became the first Israeli Ethiopian to win the Miss Israel title back in 2013. Just last year, she placed second in the Israeli version of the T.V. show Survivor, which took place in Honduras. She recently founded and helps fund the Titi project, which provides extracurricular activities and enrichment to 66 Ethiopian children in Netanya, and she hopes to expand the project and give other kids opportunities that she lacked growing up. Here, she talks about her journey through life and what is yet to come.

“Queen of Kosher,” Chef Jamie Geller. Geller is the Founder and CEO of Kosher Network International, publisher of, and the award-winning ‘Jamie Geller’s Joy of Kosher Magazine’. She’s the author of four cookbooks, including the wildly popular ‘Quick and Kosher Recipes from the Bride Who Knew Nothing.” Chances are you’ve seen her on television shows, newspapers and magazines all over the world. Before she found her way around the kitchen, Jamie graduated Magna Cum Laude - Phi Beta Kappa from NYU in just three years,. She then enjoyed an illustrious career as an award winning TV producer and marketing executive. Jamie and her husband have six kids and now reside in Jerusalem.

Ambassador Danny Ayalon, one of Israel’s most distinguished public servants. Ayalon served as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, a Member of Knesset and Ambassador to the United States from 2002-2006, as well as foreign policy advisor to three Prime Ministers. He was elected as the #1 “most influential foreign diplomat” by Foreign Policy Magazine. In addition, he founded the Truth about Israel, an online series of videos about Israel. They’ve been translated into 50 languages and have garnered a world-wide audience.

New episodes of “IsraelCast” are released every other Wednesday and listeners can subscribe via iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play—by simply searching for IsraelCast. To listen to the “IsraelCast” online, please visit:

JEWISH NATIONAL FUND (JNF) began in 1901 as a dream and vision to reestablish a homeland in Israel for Jewish people everywhere. Jews the world over collected coins in iconic JNF Blue Boxes, purchasing land and planting trees until ultimately, their dream of a Jewish homeland was a reality. Today, JNF continues to give all generations a unique voice in building and ensuring the prosperity of the land of Israel through their generosity and partnership with the people of Israel.

JNF embodies both heart and action; our work is varied in scope but singular in benefit. We strive to bring an enhanced quality of life to all of Israel’s residents, and translate these advancements to the world beyond. JNF is greening the desert with millions of trees, building thousands of parks, creating new communities and cities for generations of Israelis to call home, bolstering Israel’s water supply, helping develop innovative arid-agriculture techniques, and educating both young and old about the founding and importance of Israel and Zionism.

JNF expanded its education operations to include Alexander Muss High School in Israel (AMHSI-JNF). Since 1972, AMHSI-JNF has provided a unique, accredited, semester study abroad program for high school students where the land of Israel becomes a living classroom, demonstrating 4,000+ years of Jewish and Israeli history. Our semester, mini-mester, and summer programs help teens from the US and around the globe develop skills and tools that boost their college applications and prepare them for college and beyond.


JNF is a registered 501(c)(3) organization and United Nations NGO, which continuously earns top ratings from charity overseers. For more information on JNF, call 800.JNF.0099 or visit JNF.ORG.